From: Greg Hands M.P. Subject: News Bulletin from Greg Hands M.P.

#394 Date: 24 February 2014 11:02 To:

In this edition:
Greg Hands M.P.’s Diary Website of the Week: Hammersmith & Fulham Conservative Councillors Greg Hands MP welcomes new trains with increased capacity on District Line Photo news: Westfield Park, Chelsea Greg Hands disappointed at water bill rises to fund Super Sewer Photo news: Kensington, Chelsea & Fulham Conservative Future Hammersmith & Fulham included in Heathrow consultation, after pressure from the Conservative Council Kensington & Chelsea has the lowest rates of overweight and obese adults in the country How to contact Greg Hands M.P.

Issue 394 - Monday 24th February 2014

Since the last edition, Greg:
Welcomed news of another increase in capacity on the Wimbledon branch of the District Line, this time through the introduction of the new “S Class” trains later this month. The Line includes five stations in Greg’s constituency. For more, see below. Attended the unveiling of a memorial plaque at Westfield Park, Chelsea, to mark 70 years of what is believed to be the last bomb to fall on Chelsea. For photo, see below. Welcomed pupils from Cameron House School, Chelsea, for a Question & Answer session at the House of Commons. Attended and addresses the Annual General Meeting of Kensington, Chelsea & Fulham Conservative Future. For picture, see below. Carried out his duties as the Government’s Deputy Chief Whip. Held a regular, weekly, advice surgery for local Chelsea and Fulham residents, at Fulham Library, on Fulham Road, close to Parsons Green tube. Greg’s surgeries are generally weekly, on Monday mornings, at either Fulham Library, or Peter Jones, Sloane Square, Chelsea. To make an appointment, email or telephone 020 7219 5448.


Website of the Week:
The website of the Hammersmith & Fulham Conservative Councillors – why not get involved to help keep the Council in Conservative hands, with election day coming on Thursday 22nd May.


Greg Hands MP welcomes new trains with increased capacity on District Line

Greg Hands MP at the District Line control centre. As the latest stage of his decade-long campaign to increase capacity on the District Line, Chelsea & Fulham MP Greg Hands has welcomed the arrival of new “S Class” trains coming into service on the District Line later this month. The Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham has the highest number of Tube users of any borough in the UK, and Chelsea similarly has many Tube users via Sloane Square and Earl’s Court. In 2011 14,000 residents responded in a TfL consultation which resulted in five more rush-hour trains running through Fulham during the morning peak. Greg himself was a guest of Transport for London when visiting one of the very first S-Class trains, when they were introduced on the Hammersmith & City Line early in 2013. The new 'walk-through' SClass trains, which are one carriage bigger than the line's old trains, will go into operation for the first time on the Wimbledon Branch Line, which runs through Fulham and through Sloane Square, at the end of February, and 80 new District Line trains will be phased in gradually until all are in service by 2016. The S-Stock is unique as it's the first train on the Tube with a walkthrough gangway between carriages - the inside of the train is one continuous length, providing improved capacity, security and passenger flow. The new trains, which are built by Bombardier in Derby, can accommodate 865 passengers, 17% more than current stock, and have wider doors and walkways, as well as air conditioning. They are also better adapted for wheelchair users and CCTV also enables the driver to see into every carriage, for increased safety and security. The District Line is also used by more than 700,000 people each day. At peak times the Wimbledon branch of the District Line operates at 92 per cent of capacity with some trains operating over capacity, and many passengers unable to board at stations such as Parson’s Green and Fulham Broadway Welcoming the new trains, Greg said: “This is fantastic news for everyone in Fulham and many stops beyond. I have been campaigning for more trains on the Wimbledon branch for years. This new trains will now add significantly more capacity, on the line making for more efficient, comfortable and smoother journeys. The airconditioning will also be welcome during the summer months. I travel by the District Line at least twice a day between Fulham, Chelsea and Westminster and am looking forward to using them; I’m sure many residents are too.” Similar S-Class trains were introduced on the on the Circle and Hammersmith and City lines last September and have proved popular with passengers. The District Line's existing trains are more than 40 years old. They started service in 1969/70 and were manufactured in two batches in 1969, with a further supply in 1977. By the end of 2016 there will be 191 of the new trains on 40% of the Tube network, running on the Circle, District, Hammersmith & City and Metropolitan lines.

Photo news:

Westfield Park, Chelsea

Greg Hands MP at the unveiling of a new historical plaque in Westfield Park, Chelsea, to mark the last World War Two bomb to fall on Chelsea, together with the Mayor (Cllr Charles Williams), the Mayoress (Mrs June Williams), a Chelsea Pensioner, the German Deputy Naval Attache (Jan Hackstein) and Chelsea Riverside Ward Councillor (Cllr Gerard Hargreaves) and local residents.

Greg Hands disappointed at water bill rises to fund Super Sewer
Greg Hands, the MP for Chelsea and Fulham, has called on Thames Water to do more to protect the pockets of their customers, and not to pass on the cost of building the planned Super Sewer, by hiking prices above inflation. Earlier this month, UK water companies announced that average bills across England and Wales are set to rise by around 2% this year, just below the current inflation at 2.7%. However while most firms are increasing prices by less than the rate of inflation the biggest company, Thames Water, will impose a 3.4% hike on the combined water and sewerage charge. This represents an £12 rise for the average household, which will come into effect on 1 April 2014. The rise for Thames customers comprises of the sewerage component of the bills, which will rise by £13 a year. Thames, which serves 14 million customers in and around London, had asked the regulator Ofwat to be able to impose a one-off £29 bill hike for 2014/15 but the request was turned down following pressure from Greg Hands MP and other consumer groups. Commenting on the announced bill increase Greg said: “I am disappointed that Thames Water have insisted on hiking prices on hard pressed families by more than inflation, despite repeated requests from me and Ofwat for them to keep costs down. I am however pleased that we managed to block the proposed rise of £29 (11%), and I am grateful to Ofwat for this.” Greg added: “This rise stems solely from Thames Water’s plans for the expensive Super Sewer, as evidenced by the fact they are cutting the water supply component of the bills. I am continuing to campaign against the drilling of the tunnel from Carnwath Road in Fulham, and against the project cost being passed on to customers. Thames should follow the good example of other UK water companies and cut prices for their customers in these difficult times.” In October, Ofwat called on all companies to consider whether they needed to take up their full permitted increases, in recognition of the difficult economic circumstances facing many of their customers. Six companies (Affinity, Anglian, Southern, United Utilities, Wessex, Yorkshire) have responded by reducing their allowed bill increases in 2014-15. Cathryn Ross, Ofwat Chief Executive, said: “It’s our job to make sure customers are getting a fair deal. We know that customers are having a tough time. In the last five years bills have risen with inflation, yet we are well aware customers’ incomes haven’t. We are pleased that a number of companies have heard our call, listened to their customers, and taken action. Ten million households will now benefit from lower than expected bills this April. We are now focused on getting the best deal for customers over the next five years.” These rises are the final ones of the current five-year pricing period. Ofwat is currently analysing and challenging companies’ business plans for the period 2015-20. Final decisions on these prices will be made by January 2015, with new bills coming into effect in April 2015.

Photo news:

Kensington, Chelsea & Fulham Conservative Future

Greg Hands MP, RBKC Council Leader Nick Paget-Brown and members of Kensington, Chelsea & Fulham Conservative Future at their Annual General Meeting earlier this month.

Hammersmith & Fulham included in Heathrow consultation, after pressure from the Conservative Council

Proposed location of new third runway at Heathrow Airport. Heathrow bosses have agreed to explain their airport expansion plans face-to-face with Hammersmith & Fulham residents following pressure from the council. Despite the fact the borough is likely to be among the most affected by proposals for an additional runway, Heathrow had originally omitted Hammersmith & Fulham (H&F) from a list of consultation events until the leader of the council stepped in. After the Davies Commission included Heathrow on its shortlist of options for additional runway capacity in the UK, airport officials launched a consultation on plans for a third landing strip but failed to include H&F on its list of consultation venues. Glossy adverts said that residents from Brentford, Colnbrook, Harlington, Harmondsworth, Hounslow, Longford, Putney, Richings Park, Richmond, Stanwell Moor and Windsor were all set to get public exhibitions where local residents will be able to ‘pick up a copy of the consultation document and meet some of the Heathrow team and learn more about the proposals.’ However, despite the fact that half of H&F is already under Heathrow flight paths and could suffer worse disruption if a third runway plan ever takes off, Heathrow officials had decided not to hold an event in the borough before their u-turn last week. Council Leader, Cllr Nicholas Botterill, says, “I am pleased that the council’s intervention has persuaded Heathrow officials to change their minds and agree to hold a consultation event in our borough. H&F residents simply cannot be ignored on an issue as serious as the future of Heathrow Airport. “Residents can now probe Heathrow’s plans to build a third runway at the UK’s busiest airport in detail without having to traipse out of borough.” The ‘Shaping Heathrow’s north west runway proposal’ takes place at Hammersmith Town Hall on Wednesday March 12 between 12noon – 8pm. Residents can find out more about the consultation by calling 0800 307 7996 or emailing or by visiting The consultation started last week and runs until March 16.

Kensington & Chelsea has the lowest rates of overweight and obese adults in the country
According to new data released this week by Public Health England, rates of overweight and obese adults in Kensington and Chelsea are the lowest in England. Commenting on the figures, Cllr Mary Weale, the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea's Cabinet Member for Public Health, said: "While I am very pleased that percentages of overweight and obese adults in Kensington and Chelsea are the lowest in the country it is not yet time to celebrate. The fact is that close to 60,000 people in the borough are overweight or obese means that too many of our residents will still miss out on more good years of health because of preventable disease. "We are working hard to tackle public health concerns like obesity. Current initiatives include building a brand new leisure centre in North Kensington and refurbishing the Chelsea Sports Centre. Our well maintained parks and open spaces are wonderful and provide a fantastic environment for people to take exercise on their own or with their families."

5 ways to contact Greg Hands M.P.:
By Phone: By email: By post: In person: 020 7219 5448 Greg Hands M.P. House of Commons London SW1A 0AA Click here for details of how to book an appointment at Greg Hands M.P.’s weekly surgery

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